The title of a debut album of Polish violist Krzysztof Komendarek-Tymendorf, “ReVIOLAtion, is far from coincidental and implies a “viola revolution.” The disc released by Naxos Records will be available on 27 November 2020.

To many music professionals and aficionados, the viola continues to occupy a lower position on the podium in a unique competition for the laurels of primacy among string instruments. Krzysztof Komendarek-Tymendorf goes out to prove (and does so most convincingly!) that the viola to be a truly versatile medium. In that, his efforts are in line with Prof. Piotr Reichert’s opinion that only a performance delivered by an excellent violist is distinguished by both the level of virtuosity typical of a violinist and the cello’s depth of sound.

At the same time, the titular “revolution” refers to promoting a repertoire hitherto unknown to the general public. In the case of the artist’s first solo album, the works worth mentioning in this respect are sonatas by Fyodor Druzhinin and Mieczysław Weinberg. The musician got to know them in-depth while preparing his doctoral dissertation. He was also the first in Poland to perform a recording of the above works (he is the author of their bowing and fingering arrangement).

ReVIOLAtion should also be understood as a reinterpretation of the program presented on the album. For Krzysztof Komendarek-Tymendorf, it represents extremely important artistic freedom since he decodes each work individually through the prism of his own experience, which often results in an intriguing—sometimes controversial—interpretative concept. The repertoire chosen by the artist, including Capriccio “Hommage à Paganini” Op. 55 by the Belgian violin genius Henri Vieuxtemps, offers an excellent opportunity to present this interpretative vision and to show the full range of the sound and technical capabilities of the instrument. The album could not lack a Polish accent, hence the Polish Caprice by Grażyna Bacewicz (1909–1969). This final piece on the album is a true virtuosic gem which requires the performer to overcome a number of technical problems while maintaining a dance-like, folk character in the neo-Classical spirit.

The word “ReVIOLAtion” lies close to “revelation” and a “revelation,” which, paraphrasing the definitions of the term offered by the Oxford Dictionary of English, makes people witness something they have hitherto been unaware of, something extraordinary, secret or reverend. Undoubtedly, the repertoire on the album and its creative rendition by Krzysztof Komendarek-Tymendorf meet these criteria.